Post release #18

Dear friends and colleagues, 

The reporting period was filled with numerous events. Founded in 2022 thanks to  international assistance of friends of Ukraine from all over the world, the “InterFamily” Family Medicine Clinic continues reaffirming its international status. As it is well known, the “InterFamily” Clinic is a unique medical institution in Ukraine. It serves two important missions: (1) to serve as an excellent facility for medical education for student doctors and residents specializing in family medicine (both Ukrainian and foreign) ; (2) to provide high- quality and full spectrum care for IDPs  and their families.

Medical education – sharing experience on international level.

Starting from 2022  together with EURACT we are successfully implementing “EUSIT” Project (European Support to Ukrainian GPs and GP trainees). Within this project plus to  the  “Round Table of “DEGAM”  in Drezden  which was attended by the young doctors and residents of “InterFamily” clinic, the Director of the “InterFamily” Clinic Dr. Pavlo Kolesnyk who may be considered a pioneer of the family medicine in Transcarpathia  was invited to Japan to share Ukrainian 25 years family medicine experience in education and practice.  To say the visit was a success would be an understatement. A pioneer of family medicine in Japan Prof. Manabu Yoshimura, the only GP teacher of his faculty department,  organized a fantastic welcome for the Ukrainian expert. In spite of the fact that the health care system in Japan is considered one of the most advanced in the entire world, Japan is facing the need for major reforms in its primary care.

Like 30 years ago in Ukraine, only 1% of Japanese medical graduates used to choose GP as their future profession. Unique charisma, passion, and excellent lecturer skills helped Dr. Kolesnyk in a week to make majority of young English speaking Japanese medical students fall in love with family medicine. The last visit to Japan has raised the “InterFamily” Clinic to a new qualitative level in popularizing family medicine: from study to teaching.

International projects

The reporting period was rich in” InterFamily”’s participating in plenty of projects.

1.As it was reported earlier, the war in Ukraine caused massive mental disorders among IDP patients who became our target group. Unfortunately, by the end of 2023, the specialists in behavior cognitive psychotherapy from the institutions “Doctors Without Borders” “PROLISKA” which helped us in treating mental disorders, stopped receiving financing and stopped their support of our clinic. As a result for some time   “INTERFAMILY” Clinic was not able to provide free psychological care to the patients.  Thanks to the donations from Corvallis Sister-Cities (USA) we launched a new UKRAINE MENTAL HEALTH PROJECT (UMHP) which made it possible to employ the Clinic’s psychiatrist and psychologist to provide free help to the IDP patients with mental disorders. The Clinic’s young GPs Oksana Ilkov, Yuriy Sich led by the young family doctor and psychiatrist Andriy Kolesnyk who graduated from MhGAP (Mental Health GAP) training of the trainers initiated abbreviatedclinical discussion club courses” for the Clinic’s staff. Once or twice a month together with the trainers they study clinical cases of mental health disorders and their evidence-based management.  Such a not foreseen but very effective pilot approach, proposed by the “InterFamily” Clinic, was highly evaluated by UNICEF.  We plan to introduce these activities throughout the Transcarpathian region and Ukraine. 

UMHP project coincided surprisingly well with a new European grant project MIMIND of which the “InterFamily” clinic became a participant. The goal of MIMIND project is to promote good mental health and prevent mental health problems among migrants, refugees, and internally displaced people from Ukraine.

2.Being always grateful for the financial support from our donors, we are doing our best to achieve the financial sustainability of the “InterFamily” Clinic  by means of different grant projects. This is one of the ways to achieve this goal. The Training Centre of Family Medicine and Outpatient Care  we are creating now fits perfectly well into another international grant project DIGIT4 Care whose aim is to foster innovations and digital technologies in healthcare provision through transnational collaboration within Danube region.  Without any hesitations, the “InterFamily” Clinic joined this Project. The Training Centre  has five subdivisions: 1) Digital Simulation Training Office; 2) Virtual Clinical Office; 3) Point of Care in Ultrasound Diagnostics Training Office 4) Family Doctors Simulation Office and 5) Baby and Children’s care Office 

1) Digital Simulation Training Office 

Due to fantastic efforts of our long and trusted friend Dr. Celia Hildebrand (USA),

  an expert in auricular acupuncture protocol for trauma, pain, and stress, we became  the recipients of four invaluable simulators from Canada: a) combat Cezar for  military field medicine; b) mannequin Istan for internal medicine disorders management training с) two kids simulators for management pediatric disorders. New simulator trainings either be included in the education curriculum or might be used as additional pieces of trainings for the students of the University. Thanks to the brilliant trainer from Germany Maxim Werle, who has been providing online trainings on a volunteer basis, we organized a team of trainers from the Clinic’s residents led by the 1st year resident Vadim Voloshin.  Several trainings with an expert from Germany multiplied by enthusiasm and eagerness helped them to master their skills in handling the simulators.  

2)Virtual Clinical Training Placement   

This is one more project which is being implemented in cooperation with the experts from Great Britain. “Smart glasses” give the opportunity to implement streaming clinical examination of patients based on the “InterFamily” clinic with the participation of remote students in Britain and in various cities of Ukraine. Clinical placements have been partially restricted in Ukraine because of the war. Thus, only 60% of undergraduate medical students across the country have access to teaching online.

As a part of the further development of this project, new equipment is expected to arrive to the Clinic, including a video and audio device for two-way data transfer from the patient to the audience and back. The combination of simulators with smart glasses activities is on the way.

High quality and full spectrum care for IDPs  and their families.

ShowUp4Health is one more international grant project which the “InterFamily” Clinic participates in. The goal of this project is  to develop  an Integrated Social-Healthcare Development Methodology under  increasing risk of non – communicable diseases for vulnerable people ( Roma and IDP communities )  in the Danube region. 

The third constituent part of The Multifunctional Training Centre is represented by The Point of Care in Ultrasound Diagnostics which matches the international grant project ShowUp4Health.  

3)Point of Care in Ultrasound Diagnostics  

POCUS is another   simulation training Centre for GPs of the Clinic. This simplified ultrasound examination system includes: a compact ultrasound devices: “Butterfly” donated to us by  Corvallis Sister-Cities (USA)  and  an  ultrasound machine donated by our Czech friends. Thanks to a Czech coordinator of EUSIT, national representative of Czech Republic in EURACT Jachym Bednar, Pavlo and Natalya Kolesnyk managed to attend free one-day Joint POCUS course in Prague.     

Within the ShowUp4Health Project we plan to launch practical assistance to IDPs utilizing Screening Advisor by means of which we’ll be able to:

  1. To carry on screening to the whole family;
  2. To diagnose depression and to cure it;
  3. To provide free gynecological care to IDP patients  on the basis of the clinic;
  4. To carry on cardio-vascular disorders screening;
  5. To promote the message of the importance of prevention over cure.

All the above projects need well trained and experienced staff and we plan to employ our doctors and the best former residents for these tasks. 

Taking into consideration the bulk of work to be done we look forward to welcoming foreign experts to carry on different trainings based of the “InterFamily” Clinic.